Sales commission question?

I have recently arranged the batch manufacture of some devices (in China) for a couple of clients. They now want me to sell these in the UK for them. I am willing to approach resellers but I confess that I haven’t done this kind of sales before. What I am unsure about is :
Reasonable commission: 20% ? 25% ? (expect to sell a couple of hundred at a time for c. £1.50 ea -we will have 10,000 in batch 1)
What stops the client paying a commission on the first sale and then cutting me out of all future sales? Or is that normal and the only way around that is to be a reseller?
What is the best kind of contractual arrangement to have: should I aim to be an agent? a sales rep?
Any source of contract template that you know of for this kind of arrangement? I want to safeguard my position in the long term if possible.
Any advice much appreciated
Thanks Jason but the way this has worked is that the UK client is the inventor and holds a patent (in both cases) under contract I am the supplier and have added a small commission to the cost of manufacturing in China. I can make much more money by selling in the UK also. I need to have the contract with the UK client, who owns the goods

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2 Responses to “Sales commission question?”

  1. wood_vulture says:

    I suppose you could put together an additional contract in which you assign yourself a fancy title like "UK Distributor."

    I feel a little odd saying this, because I’ve never experienced success in this field, but have you ever thought of starting an MLM? You know, multi-level marketing.

    I know that for a 1.5 GBP price point it might not seem worth it, but usually things that inexpensive don’t last too long. And non-durable products have GREAT potential for repeat customers.

    And if you can set it up so that your company (which could contract with self-employed sales reps all over the UK… all over Europe… all over Asia… all over the world?) takes a straight 25%.

    You make a speech, calling for regional sales representatives. They override regular sales managers or distributors (getting a portion of each sale, without having to do much of the actual work). They’re like managers, but they don’t require a salary. They have unlimited income potential, if they’re good at developing and motivating people.

    And as people climb up, you have to do less and less, and still you get paid.

    I’ve always thought it would be awesome to start an MLM, and if you should happen to need an RSM/RSD, I happen to know an ambitious young man who’d LOVE the opportunity (not very subtle, I know).

    Hope that helps.

  2. jason c says:

    The key thing you need to get is an exclusive agreement with the manufacturer in China. You need to set yourself up as an exclusive UK distributor for this product.

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